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In the Gravehold Comic lies the Sorcerer's Arena

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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A recent Glory Islands Vid




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A new legacy game? Well not only a new legacy game but Aeon's End: Legacy of Gravehold!!! New to me!

I hadn't played Aeon's End before I played Aeon's End: Legacy, and it opened a whole new world I didn't know I needed. Now I have the full boat of Aeon's End on my shelves and I haven't looked back.

To hear there was another Legacy game, just brightened up my day and I was so excited to start the new game.

I won't get into the nitty-gritty of the 2 games I have played so far, but I will talk about the experience. In the first game, you will be given the choice to go one way or another and that will determine your possible starting characters. I do happen to know you will unlock the other characters later in the game and you won't miss out on much of any of the unseen content right off the bat.

The first game is quite difficult to get through, there are a lot of questions and little rules that could easily be missed.

This legacy game is NOT an intro into Aeon's End.

I can't stress that enough. I sort of wish they named it something completely different as someone new might see Legacy in the name and think they can just start playing it. If you already know Aeon's End well, then I don't see much of an issue jumping into this one, but you have to stick with it after the first game.

Michael and I read a lot of forum posts during that first game and it seems like it is a common issue for players. You can trust me that the game will clear up in game 2. That is as far as I have gotten and like all Aeon's End, I just want to keep playing more and discovering new content and possibilities.

I love that you don't have to stick to the character you chose in game 1 if you don't want to. You can try playing other characters.

There is always another surprise around the corner and into the next game. I freaking love it and am so excited to see what's next.

The photos below aren't really spoilers, but if that really matters to you then don't look, otherwise, I don't think you will find something spoilers in them. You can see some artwork in the character and cards.

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I love anything Disney-themed, so when there is a new Disney game I am definitely down to try it. This time I got to check out Disney Sorcerer's Arena: Epic Alliances Core Set. New to me!

In Sorcerers Arena, players are battling to knock out their opponents to claim points. It is a race to gain X points to win the game. If you are playing with 2 players then you will have to select 2 characters to use in the game.

The rules set you up with specific characters for the first game and fewer points. It is laid out really nicely to introduce you to the mechanics in the game. As you learn and play, the next games will introduce more abilities and powers.

In the basic intro game you will have a starting hand and then draw a card each turn. When it is your turn you will move and play action. There are move cards and there are action cards, but if you don't have a card or don't want to use a card then you can do the standard basic move or actions.

Since you are using 2 characters, you will shuffle both of those character decks together and draw from one deck. When you are using a character you can only play cards with that character's photo on them. Ariel can use Ariel's cards. It is pretty easy to figure out and the mechanics are smooth.

I am not one for arena-style games like this, but it really was better than most. It is better because of the hand management you have to do. You might have a strong character like Gaston, but if you don't have the cards to back up the moves you want, then it won't be as successful. It is a clever mechanic.

As you play more you will gain more abilities to think about as well, but you will also have fewer cards in your hand. You have to be skilled in knowing what to hold and what to discard.

This game will work great for families as the Disney theme is awesome. It is perfect to have an entry into the combat-style tactical grid game. I did enjoy this more than others in the genre, but I don't think it is a game I would frequently return to play as it just isn't my favorite type of game.

It is quick-playing and accessible which is what counts for new gamers and casual gamers. I know a lot of people who will really dig this one.


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I was sent a prototype of The Comic Book Bubble to check out beore the Kickstarter launch. New to me!

In The Comic Book Bubble, you are trying to buy low and sell high in a rotating market. After 4 rounds, if you have the most money you will win.

Each round will have 4 turns where players will simultaneously select the action they want to take for the round. You can buy a new comic from your hand to your shelf, Super Powers which will perform the action on the selected card, or you can speculate which will change the market of the colors on the cards selected.

If you chose to buy in the round then you cannot sell one at the end of the round, otherwise, once the market prices have changed you can look and see if you want to sell a comic depending on their current values.

The color theme represents the type of comic they are and you will find the price based on those colors when you go to buy and when you go to sell.

The game is fairly simple and accessible. Michael and I knocked out a few games including once on the Livestream if you were looking for a full tutorial and playthrough.

At first, I thought the game would easily be too chaotic, but you do have control over the cards you select and you have a general idea as to what will happen with the speculating. I can see with 5 players that it might be slightly on the chaotic side, but the game is so quick, you have to go with what you can when you can and it doesn't bother me.

I really enjoy the card drafting and all the different possible special actions. There is more depth than at first glance.

This game will have a solo mode, but it is great to know this game works great with 2 players and I think it will be fun with more as well.

In the end, I am pleasantly surprised by this one. It is a simple joy to play and look forward to seeing it fulfilled on Kickstarter in the near future. It will be a perfect introduction to this genre. I would be happy to play this one once it is published! Definitely, one I recommend to casual gamers and strategy gamers.


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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:00 am
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Pessoa loved to write about the Space Station over Yosemite

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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I was so excited to show Michael the new game Space Station Phoenix!

Space Station Phoenix is a game I learned back in April and just adored it! I was so excited for the recent release to hit the table again and I knew it was a game Michael would love as well.

If you aren't familiar with the game, your goal is to gain the most points. The game end has 3 possible triggers so you have to be on your toes for when the game might end.

During the game, you will take actions by spending gems and using ship actions. There are many possible actions and the bigger the ship the more powerful the action. You will use resources to gain aliens and station sections. Aliens you collect will unlock income and other bonuses in the stations you have.

What I think is the coolest mechanic of the game is the scrapping of your ships for metal. You need to scrap your possible action spaces in order to gain metal to help build your station bigger. Is it a very clever mechanic and really makes you think a few times about the actions that really matter.

I have to say the Livestream video below was exciting and I made a cool play.

There are so many strategies to try because there are so many possible stations that could be in play and in each game you will gain a different hub which starts you off completely different too. So much variety it is insane!

Even after 3 plays I still want to keep playing it and enjoying the strategies. I loved this game from the first play and still love it. I would highly recommend it to anyone who likes engine-building games with many paths to try.

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I was so excited to try out Pessoa once I received it! New to me!

I didn't know anything about Pessoa before going into this game. Thankfully, there is some background in the rules as to who Pessoa is, so you can get an idea of who he was. Apparently, Pessoa was a very passionate writer who would take on a persona. He created something like 75 personas but they were more than personas and he referred to them as heteronyms. In the game, you are playing as one of the heteronym characters.

The whole backstory is really interesting and it really ties into the game-play.

In the game, you will get 12 turns to gain as many points as possible. On your turn, you will either move your heteronym pawn or if you control Pessoa you can move his pawn. You may choose to rest instead which will refresh your energy.

There are only a few spaces on the board to visit for action. You will want to gain verse cards. The cards are really important for creating poems and for visiting the book store. At the book store, you will gain tiles that will help score more points for your poems. If you go to the Rossio you can crat a poem with the cards you have. You will gain points for a number of aspects including your personal ability and the color of the cards and how many cards you use.

Everything about the game is pretty simple to understand, but there is one other small mechanic that when you visit the book store or Rossio, if you play a card with a matching astrology sign, then you get a small bonus. This small mechanic makes the game have so much dynamic and added thought, it is awesome. Knowing you won't get a small reward for doing the action you want to do this turn, makes all the difference in the game. Small choices like that, make it deeper than it first appears.

After playing twice, I can say with confidence that this game is a winner. The mechanics are really nice and the game flow is easy. It feels fresh and thematic. It is a quick 12-turn game, but the choices you have are meaningful and will have you processing the whole time. This is a great game and one I would definitely recommend. Keeper for sure.

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Michael and I had some time and decided to knock out a quick 2-player game called Yosemite. New to me!

Yosemite is a tile drafting game where you are walking around the map, but you move according to the animal tile you are standing on. The animals you collect will be used in a photo you are looking to take! gathering points from the photos and the campsites and possible landscapes you will want to have the most points.

There are 5 animal types and each animal will have a different background to either gain a fish, campsite, or the ability to take a photo. The landscape tiles will have a token on them that can only be claimed by one person and they will add additional scoring for those photos taken in that landscape.

The whole game is pretty easy to get into and play. You are looking at a 20 minutes time play and it is pretty simple. You will need to use the rules for movement rules for each animal type, but it will be clear after a few plays.

Michael and I have played a few times now and he has kicked my butt in both games. I just got cornered in the Livestream video below and ended up losing a few turns for my poor plays.

For a quick game like this, I certainly think it is harmless and one that I could see playing again. I don't think it offers anything new or exciting, but it is beautiful. I think this will work for a lot of couples that game together and like the small 2-player boxed games. Definitely happy to have tried this.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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Mon Jun 20, 2022 11:00 am
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The Zombie Princess or the Shamans will Name the Thing

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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At the recent game night, we pulled out Shamans to try since we needed more than 3 players to play. New to me!

Shamans is a hidden traitor trick-taking game. The idea is to not push the marker to the end or the traitor will win. Each time a player doesn't follow suit the marker will automatically move 1 space. The players never have to follow suit if they don't want!

There are several colored suits and if a player finishes a collection by playing the final card in a color they will gain a reward.

The winner will lead the next trick, but there is also a cool reward for the lowest card in the matching suit by collecting a token.

On the tokens, you will find a variety of things, but the best is a dagger which might give you the power to eliminate a player for the good or bad. How well can you read every one? If you are the traitor this is a great plan!

There are definitely a lot of interesting mechanics in this game and if you like trick-taking games this is one to check out for sure.

For me, it gave me a similar feeling to Mu since you are always changing teams each turn and there is just no way of catching up sometimes if someone is just out in the lead. It is not something that excited me. I suppose I also don't like the race for points. I kind of wish it was some other scoring mechanic.

Beautiful game and I could play it again. I would like to try it again, but I have a feeling this is just not a game for me. I am not good at being a traitor, and I just don't like that mechanic in general. It will definitely work for the right group.

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Michael and I checked out a new game called Zombie Princess and the Enchanted Maze. New to me!

If you know me at all, you know I am sooooo not into zombies, but I do like tile placement so I figured I should give it a go.

In Zombie Princess, you are trying to cross the board to get your key and then make it back to the center without becoming a zombie in the process.

Each turn you will first roll for the princess to move and you can move her, ideally in the direction away from you and towards your opponent. If you reach another player they will turn zombie and then play differently.

If you move the Princess then you have to also as a tile adjacent to where she is to keep her on the move. After her turn, you will take your own turn by moving and possibly rotating a tile and playing a tile if you want. Pretty standard stuff.

This game definitely doesn't offer anything new or exciting. I am not into the very brown and flat board and I am certainly not the audience for the zombie theme.

After the 2 player game I had, I can safely say this is not a game I would return to as I have just so many other games I would rather play with these types of mechanics. It just seems forgettable in the long run.

This could work for casual gamers who love zombies.

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Back in Feb at Tantrum Con, we played a party game called Name The Thing. I just got my copy in and we decided to check it out during a recent game night.

Name the Thing is a party game where each turn there is one judge so you are playing the cards to the person judging based on the category.


Each player has a hand of cards and each card has a word on it and you will have to craft a phrase using 2-4 cards as a response. If your response is selected as the best you will take the cards as points.

You can play to a set amount or just play until you are tired of playing.

The game is super simple so we could play it late at night when these games are called for. I figured Susan and James wouldn't mind it so much, but I don't think Susan was having a great time playing. It is hard if you don't get some good word combos or your response just never gets selected.

In any case, that doesn't bother me much since it is just a party game. I just go in to just have fun and not to "win". For a quick game, you can't take things too personally there is too much luck of the draw with the right cards that work.

We had a few really clever rounds. When we finished the game, I took a picture of the sets that I won with so it would be interesting if you could guess the topics for them.

Michael did end up winning this game and I came in second, somehow. I usually lose this type of game since I am just terrible at it, but I have fun too.

This is a fun game for those who enjoy party games like Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity, it falls pretty close in line to those games, you just have more say in how you respond with Name the Thing.

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Some cool photos of the new Marvel HeroClix: Marvel Studios' What If…? Miniatures Game.

If you are into Heroclix, be sure to check out this new What If...? version!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


External image
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External image


All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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Fri Jun 17, 2022 11:00 am
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The Balada was sung about the Yak in the Triolet group

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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We recently played Rulebenders



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I was super excited to check out the new Pretzel Games title called Yak. New to me!

Pretzel Games/Plan B Games always has top-notch games with quality and production and Yak does not disappoint. There are actually amazing yak figures and a tiny baby yak that is just too cute!

When you open the box you will have to assemble the carts with wheels and the yaks with horns, but they will stay together when you put the game away. Yes, the carts actually wheel around the board and it is too cute!

The other major awesome components are the blocks. There are so many blocks! These black will be what you seek to collect during the game.

The blocks will be collected to help form a pyramid. The colors will matter for forming groups that will help to score you points at the end of the game. You can also play with common objectives for other ways of scoring, but having many groups will be really great for your end-game score.

In order to collect the blocks, you will need resources to trade with the cart that is in front of you.

The main rule we missed in the first part of the game was that if a cart has no blocks, you must refill it to 3 after your turn. So we started over. Very important rule!

Yak is a game driven by simultaneous card selection. The card you select will determine the action you will do, but you won't reveal your card until your turn, so the active player won't be influenced by other players' selections following theirs.

The game is a pretty simple resource management game to collect blocks. The yaks will walk around, but the catch is that if a white block is pulled from the bag, the yaks will do a 180 and start walking the other way. You can never be too sure that the yak coming your way will have the cart you were planning for. I like not being sure.

So I told you about the rule we played wrong so we started over and played correctly. The 4 player game was great since there were so many blocks coming into play and the board was ever-changing.

With 2 players you remove a yak and a single block color before the game starts. We explained the rules and did the full playthrough in the video below.

When playing with 2-players we really broke down the scoring in the video and ended up analyzing it pretty extensively. In the end, we decided the scoring is pretty one-note there isn't much variety in strategy since everything scores about the same no matter how you shake it. We both enjoy the game for sure and will continue to play it, but could see it getting stale after a few plays.

Beautiful and cute production with some simple gameplay that is just relaxing fun. Great for casual gamers.

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Michael and I had a short while so we decided to check out Triolet. New to me!

At first glance, this game looks like Scrabble but with numbers. Well, it is certainly similar, but some major differences.

In Triolet, players will have 3 tiles to work with and the object is to form groups of 3 that add to 15. You actually can't even have a group of 3 if it doesn't equal 15. You also can not have a group of more than 3.

As you play tiles you will score the points of the actual numbers and not the baby numbers. The baby numbers are the frequency in the game. It definitely confused me several times since I was an avid Scrabble player before I started playing strategy games regularly.

The board is set up like Scrabble too with x2 and x3 spaces but there is also an extra turn space. The multiplying spaces will only trigger for that tile once and not if it is included in a 15 scoring which is already doubled.

In the first game we played, I got completely demolished. Michael was laying 15s down like it was his job. I just couldn't pull the tiles I needed and the board was so closed off there wasn't much room for expanding. I lost by over 100.

The second game on the Livestream went much better and the board was much more open. You can check out the gameplay video below to see how it all played out!

This game is simply great for kids learning math and just general math enthusiasts. I certainly had a fun time playing and I would be happy to play it again. Glad to have played it.

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At BGG Con I picked up a new flip and write game called Balada. New to me!

In the game, you are trying to compose the best story from the travels of the hero. The more monsters to fight and the treasures found will all gain your some points. Over 12 turns for the first half and 12 turns in the second half you will want to gain the most points.

Each turn the players will have a choice of 2 cards. The region is also determined by where to place one of those 2 cards.

Each of the land terrains will get filled before the phase ends so you have to choose the card option that works best for the path you are creating.

Michael and I played our first game and thankfully he knew everything that was happening and could score my papers for me. There is definitely a lot of interconnecting pieces to this game and it helps if you know exactly how they all come together.

By the second game, I totally understood how to score and it wasn't an issue.

We did play on stream and if you were looking to learn how to play, Michael did a great job teaching it and explaining everything during the scoring if you wanted to play along. The sheets are on BGG to play.

I do this this game is a keeper. We both really like it. it is an interesting flip and writes and one that we will want to play going forward. It is available in the BGG Store right now if you were looking for some more flip n writes!

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Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:
Barrakude
Kinoko





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Wed Jun 15, 2022 11:00 am
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The Rival Restaurants on Planet Unknown were on the Skull Canyon

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We played Art Decko


Whale Riders: The Card Game



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At a recent game night with James and Susan, we all tried out Rival Restaurants. New to me!

In Rival Restaurants, players are trying to race to gain the most points. If you get to 20 first you will win!

During the game, players will collect income for money to spend at the different stalls to collect the ingredients needed for the menu items.

There will be a cooking phase where completing orders will happen and points will be awarded and trash will be made.

You have to manage your ingredients and your trash in order to complete the best items possible. You also have to be aware of the other players and the possible attack cards they will play on your to steal your food items and such.

There are ways to upgrade abilities and gain more income or gain a better option for menu cards.

I really like that each player will have their own items they will score better since their restaurant is a different food style, so they will gain extra if they cook a dish in that style. Each character is different too and will have a unique ability.

I don't mind the real-time nature of the game and trying to negotiate and figure everything out in a minute doesn't bother me. The attack cards are one of the issues I have in the game. I didn't feel like the cards were all that balanced.

James had the mafia cook dude that got all the special cards and was just attacking people left and right and gaining pretty big rewards for it. That role card left me feeling a bit salty. Okay, so maybe don't play with that character or remove some of the bigger OP cards.

In the opening hand, I got stuck with a really terrible advanced menu item so I just didn't even make it, and I lost horribly. Another house rule I would probably use is to draw 2 keep 1 advanced menu item at the start of the game, everyone else was scoring their advanced and I just was clogged up and having a hard time.

Besides those things I would change, I don't mind the game. I still don't think it is the right fit for me since I don't prefer race games as I always feel that it was all for nothing since it stops and I am unfulfilled with what I was working on. I guess I prefer a set number of rounds so I can plan best.

This game will definitely work for other players who don't mind the attacking cards. Hey, some people like those types of games, I am just not one of them. It was just happening far too often in our game and it made the game less fun for me.

Glad to have tried this.

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Another game we played that game night was Skull Canyon: Ski Fest. New to me!

In Skull Canyon, you are trying to gain the most points over 3 days. Each day you will get 4 turns each with 2 actions to take.

During the game, There are a few actions you could possibly take. You will collect cards as you would in Ticket to Ride. You can take a ride up the ski lift, or you can ski down a trail.

Several trails will have conditions you want to meet and gain bonus points with the cards you have.

At the end of the day, you will hang in the lodge and gain a bunch of cool rewards in a Tokaido-style worker placement mini-game.

At the start of a new day, you will gain a few extra cards to start depending on the weather conditions.

A major part of the game is the Yeti wild cards. When those are used in your set for a trail, you will activate the Yeti either by moving it or by causing an avalanche. When an avalanche is caused all players have to ski down one trail.

The whole game is pretty easy to grok and we played with a full 4players. Later Michael and I played it as a 2-player game that we played (video below).

After the first couple of plays, I can definitely say that I enjoyed the 2-player game a lot more than the 4-player game. There is so much chaos with 4 that I just didn't really enjoy the game as much as with 2. With 2, I had more control and the map is smaller, so everything just works well. I am sure the game is best with 2-3.

I liked this game pretty well, but I would rather it didn't have the attack mechanic to send everyone down the mountain. It is already hard enough to get up the mountain, just to have it all taken away from you before your next turn.

A few design issues for me, but overall a good experience and a game I would play again.



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I was so looking forward to playing the final copy of Planet Unknown.

I was so in love with this game since I first played it back in April 2020. Planet Unknown was founded by the Bears who play Musical Chairs in the Palace. Carpe Diem!.

Planet Unknown is a fantastic tile-placement game with fun choices and an amazing lazy susan. The finished game has a TON of board and a bunch of cool unique advancement tracks to try. I think at think point I have tried them all either in person or online. But the boards are nothing something I have explored so it has been very exciting trying those out.

Michael and I played a 2 player game on the Livestream (video below), so it took a minute to recall the rules, but they really aren't that hard to remember and the game is all about drafting the right tiles to get what you need and want from your advancement tracks.

We loved that play so much that we decided to play it again at our recent game night to teach James and Susan.

I finished that game with a completed board, but it wasn't even enough points to come in 1st or 2nd place. I was just so far behind in all the extra points from civ cards and tracks. I got most all my points from my board, but even that wasn't working well since my rovers were stupid slow and I couldn't clear all the meteorites.

Everything about this game is so cool and I can't seem to get enough. I love it so much so I do hope that everyone will get to check it out at some point. I just know so many people would enjoy this if they gave it a go. highly recommend!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:
The Comic Book Bubble
Carnegie





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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The Next Station has come cool Art Decko of Finding Nemo

Steph Hodge
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I went to visit my fam in Maine before BGG Con. Here is a fam pic

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Cakes!


Little Tokyo



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Michael and I played a round of Art Decko.

I have been playing this so much on BGA it was really cool to finally play the finished product in person.

This is such a fantastic game and I am so happy it is readily available for everyone to get and play now. Ta-Te really has created something special.

If you aren't familiar with the game, there is a really interesting deck-building mechanic. the cards you buy will have a few ways to be used, and as the game goes on the value of the cards will increase as more of the same colors are purchased and displayed. It all just makes sense and has a great flow. Several ways for the game to end which results in a variety of strategies to try out.

I have played this game a lot the past year, but can't seem to get enough. I am very pleased that Michael enjoys it as much as I do and was willing to play it. I did end up winning with 181 during that game.

I have included my video playthrough of my BGA play. Michael and I will be playing on the Livestream pretty soon too to show off the final product. Such a great game I recommend playing it!


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Michael and I had recently played Clue Dexter so we were all ready for more Clue with Clue: Finding Nemo. New to me!

I do have to say I prefer the theme of Dexter vs Finding Nemo, but there is definitely a large audience for the Finding Nemo theme. It is a great family game for kids and adults.

I always loved Clue growing up, so I already know so many people will grab this for the title alone.

Definitely happy to play it and see what it had to offer. I like that you have to find Dory who is lost and not Nemo. That was a cute twist.


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I have played like 100 games of Next Station: London on Board Game Arena. I really felt I had to write about it. New to me!

It nearly hit the top of my New to Me list for May, but just missed. This is such a fantastic network route-building game and works incredibly well on BGA.

You can play with added goal cards and added pencil abilities, but the basic game will offer a lot of ways to score points anyway. I prefer to play with everything thrown into the mix though.

There is a deck of pink and blue cards with shapes on them. 4 shapes and a card that is wild with all the shapes. There is also a special break card that will let you create a new line from your existing line.

You will have 4 rounds where you pull cards from the deck one at a time until all of the pink cards are drawn then a new round starts. Each round you will use a new colored pencil to draw your route. You will try to go into different regions and visit a lot of spaces in one region. You also want to cross other routes to gain points.

Everything about this game is so elegant and wonderful and it plays out so nicely. I am highly obsessed with it at the moment and will absolutely need to get a copy when I can.

Check it out if you play on BGA, I think you will really enjoy it.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Santa's Little Elves and Ra performed the Switch & Signal

Steph Hodge
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Ra is still on Gamefound for a few more days, so I was happy we were able to squeeze in a few games before that finished up.

I actually played Ra 10 years ago, so this was not a new game for me. It is a classic Knizia at this point. I am pleased to say that my few recent plays with Michael have really turned my opinion of Ra into a pleasant one. Hats off to 25th Century Games for making this classic into a beautiful and meaningful production. I am totally impressed with the chunky Ra tile and bigging tiles. If you go for the deluxe edition that will have wooden auction tiles, which is crazy and awesome!

By this point, most people know of Ra and Knizia games in general. But, if you don't know Ra, it is an auction set collection game. The new edition I played has a player board that helps show all of the possible ways to score the tiles. I really like the player board, I found it really helpful.

Michael had to totally refresh me on the rules to this game since it had been so long and I had a pretty terrible experience in the 5-player game I had originally played.

It was super easy to get into though. It is all very straightforward. I can see it being somewhat confusing when teaching new players when they have to bid and when they don't have to bid, but you play a few rounds and it all makes sense.

I think I enjoy this game with lower player counts since I have more control over a situation. Michael and I have played twice now and I won both games because I am actually not bad at reading the board situation and knowing what to do with the tiles I have to use to bid with.

With more players, you have very little control, which is probably why it leads to a miserable experience for me. I understand it is a totally different kind of game with more, and you have to go in knowing that.

For me, it just worked much better with 2-players. I actually had a great time playing! This new edition will be a keeper for sure. I definitely enjoyed it enough for that, which is great since it is stunningly beautiful.

It is still on Gamefound so now is a great time to go back to the game and get your own copy since it is a game that has been hard to find for a while. Check it out for sure and our video below!

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Now on Kickstarter, just in time for Christmas, is Santa's Little Elves! New to me!

OMG, the cute package! There is a Santa bag inside to hold all the tiles and it is just perfect. Definitely a nice touch.

I love the theme of all things Christmas. It just sparks joy for me, so any Christmas-themed game is one I will definitely want to play. Santa's Little Elves is a push-your-luck tileset collection game.

It is a very simple game that definitely targetting casual gamers. There is a board with numbers 2-5 on the sides and each side will have one tile drawn from the bag. The active player will decide which tile they want by using a die. Before they reveal the one they want, the next player will guess which number they picked. If they are correct with the guess, they will take the tile, if not then the player who chose the number will claim the tile.

Some tiles have special actions to use on a later turn, but they are mostly toys to be collected. There are two types of toys electronics and non-electronics. At the end of the game, there is a bonus for the person who collects the most of each type.

Another important mechanic is that some tiles are identical and if there are ever 2 or more of the same tile on the display, they are a set. If you try and claim a tile in a set you actually will win all the matching tiles, or you will lose them all to the player who caught you. All of the numbers are valid guesses for a set for both the die and the guesser.

That is the game! Super simple and easy to pull out and play.

I have now played twice and I am getting better at it, I still lose though. It is the situation where Michael always seems to know what I am thinking so knows what to pick at every turn! Crazy!

I need to be more unexpected it seems.

It is a cute game. I don't see playing it other than during the holiday season and with family. There isn't much strategy happening so I probably wouldn't request it. I am certainly glad to have it around and play it during the holidays and have those fun moments of "gotcha". Sneaky elves.

If you are looking for a light holiday game definitely make sure to check out the Kickstarter. Check out the video below too.

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Last year I got to try Switch & Signal, and I finally got to try it again with Michael!

Michael hadn't played it, but we both really enjoy cooperative games and this is a cool puzzle to solve. When I first heard of this, I was impressed that a train game could be cooperative and was definitely intrigued.

In the game, you are trying to make the routes accessible for the trains to move through to pick up goods and ultimately make their deliveries. You will want the game by delivering all 8 cubes before the timer runs out. The timer is a deck of cards in which one card will be flipped each turn for a special action of either placing trains and/or moving trains on the board.

You have a hand of 5 cards to start and you can play any number on your turn to take 1 of 3 actions. Or any 2 cards can be anyone's action. You always draw 5 at the end of your turn and you have a hand limit of 10.

Your job is to manage the track switches and the red and green signals for the trains to move through. You have one other action to move a single train by rolling its die and moving it. You can spend any one card to pick up good in a city too.

It is a fun puzzle to solve. You are at the mercy of the dice rolls sometimes too. The dice will determine where trains pop out and you might not be ready for that!

There is a second side to the game board with an America map too and that looks crazy! I definitely want to play on that side.

Michael and I have played two 2-player games and have won both games. We had forgotten that you had to send a card to pick up a cube in a city in the first game, but that is an asterisk. Either way, we had a TON of rounds left to complete that first game. We had several cards remaining in the 2nd game too, but it was tighter for sure.

We both really enjoy the game. I think it works great with 2 players and fine with 3 players. I don't think I would want to play with more though. I like having a bunch of turns to try and work out the board situation.

Very clever game and I definitely want to play the harder map, it looks awesome. Recommended you try this one if you enjoy cooperative games.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



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New to the Collection:
Shamans
Hellapagos
Hellapagos Expansion
Triolet
Oltree





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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The Wombat named Dexter loved Star Trek Pinball

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I love the show, Dexter! It is easily one of the best shows ever. When I was given a chance to review the Clue: Dexter, I couldn't pass it up! New to me!

Most everyone is familiar with Clue. I know I played it a lot growing up. I had the swanking Master Clue Detective version of the game with more rooms and more suspects and items, it was great. Clue: Dexter is basically what you expect it would be.

Your mission is to figure out which cop solves the case by figuring out Who the murderer is, and where will they be caught.

Fortunately for me, Michael and I could play this as a 2-player game. There is a mechanic that has cards face-down so if the person you are asking doesn't have information, you will look at one of those cards instead.

There are intrigue cards that are not used with the 2 player game but will offer some benefits for games with a higher player count.

Hey, I love me some Dexter, and I had fun playing Clue. Clue will always have a special place in my heart since I enjoy trying to deduce what's going on in games.

I am not good at Clue, but it won't stop me from playing it.

Keep in mind that this is a pretty dark theme, so I would say this version of Clue is not for kids. I am definitely happy to have played Clue again. It really makes me want to re-watch Dexter too! So great!!

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One game night we had James and Susan over so we could check out a 3+ player game I had called Wombat Kombat. New to me!

This game is headed to KS this month. Wombat Kombat has the cutest wombats and as you might expect you will be in combats. Wombat Kombat is very much a take-that game. If you are into a lot of player interaction and take-that then you will find this game entertaining.

In the game, you will have a bunch of cards, but on your turn, you will only perform one action. You can choose to attack another player, play a set of one type of card to your play area, or play a veggie or fox card. When you play a set of cards, you will knock anyone else with the same type.

A way to win is to have 4 sets of different cards in play at the start of your turn, so you are actively trying to knock other people's sets out of play.

There are a bunch of action cards that will help with attacking and defending etc.

Ultimately you will want the most points if the deck of cards runs out before someone has 4 set types.

When playing the game, I attacked Michael on the first turn since there was an event that gave me a bonus and I had pretty good attack cards. I won, as expected and it left him pretty bare bones. He did have enough cards in hand that Susan could then attack him directly following. It felt pretty brutal and it was pretty clear going later in the turn order is a big disadvantage. They should consider changing it slightly to have starting players start with fewer cards or something.

There were several things that I think still need work, but the mechanics were fine. I am just not into the take-that aspect of this game.

No one cared to stop James and he just won the game with 4 sets pretty early on. I think I had maybe 5 or 6 turns before the game ended. It was quick.

I can safely say this is a game I won't return to play again. It just isn't my type of game and I think there are some issues with balance. It is definitely fun for those players who enjoy take-that and cute wombats.

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Michael and I had some time to play another game so we checked out Star Trek: Super-Skill Pinball. New to me!

To be fair, it is Super-Skill Pinball: 4-Cade with a new theme. It is a stand-alone game so you don't have to have the base game to play.

In this new edition, there are 4 maps to try out and play and they are of varying difficulties.

If you are familiar with the game at all you will be able to pick up quickly.

If you aren't familiar with the game, it is a roll n write game of pinball. You have to try and keep the marble in play as long as possible and score as many points as possible.

Michael hadn't played this in a while, we just played the basic board, which didn't have really any differences from the original starter board. I do know there are more challenging boards included in the box though.

I don't think I have ever won a game of Super Skill Pinball, I just get caught up with strategies that don't pan out for me. Somehow I managed to pull out a win against Michael. I got the multi-balls at the right time and ended up scoring enough points to win our game.

It is easy to recommend this game to anyone who loves Star Trek or pinball. It is super thematic and just fun to see what happens. I really enjoy this pinball series that Wizkids has and will like to keep trying the new editions they create!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Fri May 20, 2022 11:00 am
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Set a Watch from the Prehistories to Tortuga 2199

Steph Hodge
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I saw an incredible Double Rainbow. No words can express how massive it was! I have never seen such vivid colors in the sky. It was glorious!

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Michael and I wanted to check out the new game called Prehistories. New to me!

In Prehistories, players are trying to get rid of all of their totem tokens first. The player who can do that will win the game.

During the game, players will use cards to bid for turn order and power for their hunt. Starting with the person who used the least value, they will collect tiles depending on that value. Sometimes the hunt will be successful and sometimes it will be damaged, but successful. Many tiles can be claimed if there is enough value.

Depending on the level of success, you will draw 0-3 cards after you go on the hunt. Any cards you don't end up using on the hunt are just returned to your hand for a later round.

Once you get the tiles you will place them onto your player board to try and form patterns. Each game will have public goals to work toward. There are every game goals to get as well. If you can complete a public goal first you can get rid of 2 totem tokens otherwise it will just be one for finishing them and for each line and column and legendary you create.

During my first game, I was one step behind Michael the whole time. He finished public goals first and got the extra discs down. I was doing different things but keeping up the best I could. When he was eventually able to win the game, I was super close to winning as well, so it was still tight until the end, I just couldn't get that leg up when I needed it.

During the second game, I did something totally different. You can watch the video below!

I have now played twice and for a quick game, I think it is super solid. I like the choices you have with choosing which cards to play and what tiles mean the most for your position. This game will appeal to the strategy gamers out there as well as the casual gamers since it is easy to learn and play. Really nice game.

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Michael and I were thinking about what game to play next and we settled on Tortuga 2199. New to me!

We didn't really know what to expect from this since it looks like another space exploration combat game, but while it is area control, there is a stronger deck-building mechanic that drives the game.

Both Michael and I really enjoy deck-building so that worked out well for us!

It looks like a big 4X type of game when really it runs about 60-90 minutes.

The flow is fairly straightforward if you have played a deck-building game before. You will get 5 cards on your turn and you will use credit and maneuver to take various actions. Ultimately, you will want to gain more cards and take control over the different locations. If you can claim 15 influence points then the game will immediately end and you win. If you conquer the center Tortuga tile then you will trigger the end of the game.

So, it is a racing game, and in my opinion, that is the game's biggest weakness as I don't like that mechanic in games at all. Another downfall is a few cards that just seem crazy OP and need development. Maybe just removing them from the game would be better.

Tortuga 2199 has a lot of great things going for it. I like that you don't have to do combat in the game I didn't want to. The option is there if I felt the need to move in and attack Michael.

There are many paths to victory and strategies to try. I can see any number of ways to win this game, and that is interesting to me.

Having played the game twice, I think it is a solid game. I would happily play it again too. I would try to fix the card balance slightly.

I have read the forums and someone asked how it compares to Tyrants of the Underdark, and that is an interesting question. I don't remember that game all that well, but it is a deck-builder with some board influence going on, so it is a valid question. I do like that game and I actually feel about the same playing both of them. But, are they better than Clank? Not really.

Definitely glad to have played this and our playthrough is below too!

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I had been wanting to play Set a Watch: Swords of the Coin for a while now. New to me!

I actually thought this was an expansion for the base Set a Watch game, but it is a standalone game that can be used with the base game by mixing and matching characters and cards. That is super interesting.

The game plays basically the same as the base, but it does add in a new coin mechanic. There are coins that are added to the camp spaces on the game board that will stack up money to be collected by the player going to camp as they take action. The coins are then used in a new market phase where the players can decide to purchase items for the coins they have collected. Each character can hold up to 2 items and there are a variety of abilities found on those cards.

The expansion adds 6 new characters with all-new character abilities and cards. There are D10s and D4s in the box, so there are some crazy abilities going on.

I took on the roles of Bounty Hunter and Heretic. The Bounty Hunter was the only range we had in our group of 4 characters, and he had some killer abilities. I could keep trophies of the kills I had and use them to help defeat other creatures of similar types. It was super awesome. My Heretic character was just as excellent. He could summon the dead to work as direct attacks, and he can manipulate the summon cards and Acolytes.

I really enjoyed the characters I got to be. Michael and I managed to get through the game until the final battle. We had a few really close rounds where we NEARLY killed every monster. We weren't confident going into the finale.

We had some powerful items that we could use, and we had enough of our abilities that we could use. The biggest issue we had was the location. It would bring monsters into play if we exhausted a final ability on a character in play. I thought we were DOOMED!

We managed to pull it out in the end. I am still shocked we managed it.

Several questions came up during the game so we had to consult the BGG forums to get answers. Edge cases and just general rules unanswered in the rules. With more powerful abilities the more edge cases you will find.

Even after figuring out the answers, it is clear that the game is well balanced and it is just a joy to play. It perfectly integrates with Set a Watch and if you have one you should get the other. Highly recommended if you enjoy Set a Watch and/or coop adventure games. I really love it.


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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:
Ra - prototype





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Wed May 18, 2022 11:00 am
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Everybody Lies about the Words they speak about the SOS Titanic

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!


A few games we played on Livestream recently
Intrepid


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There is a new edition of SOS Titanic and I was so excited finally try this game. New to me!

Long ago, Riley let me borrow some solo games including this one. I believe I tried them all excited this one, so it has haunted me ever since! I actually thought this game was pure solo, but you can indeed play and work with others to win the game and save all the passengers from the sinking of the Titanic.

I love the theme, obviously. I was a crazy teenager that saw Titanic 13 times in the theaters and loved it each time. Now, the game feels very thematic in that the women and children have to be first on the lifeboats and that you are trying to direct them into the proper positions.

The game feels very much like Solitaire, the card game. You have to get the first-class passengers in proper lines and the second-class passengers in proper lines. The boat is sinking and as cabins fill up, the passengers scurry and mix up the next compartment. Full-on panic mode!

In your turn, you can more passengers if they meet the exact requirement and do that as much as you see fit. Then you will get one action. You can use a personal ability, a special action card, or you can draw cards searching for passengers to place in line. The catch for drawing cards is that if you can't place one of them, you will have to progress the sinking ship further. If the boat sinks and you haven't saved everyone well, that's not good.

The goal is to save everyone and the more passengers in a single line that have a connection of anchor symbols on them the more points you can get. So, you have a double task of trying to get everyone in line and get those anchor symbols in place as well.

Michael and I played this, we definitely pushed our luck a lot, but we were mostly successful. I had a few cool special card abilities that I was using to get passengers from the discarded area. We were able to do very well with our sets of anchors too. I think we only flipped the book 3 times. I mean, we really had it under control. We will have to try a harder setup for the next game.

I was really impressed by this game. It isn't always going to be easy, and the use of your character abilities is critical. There are a lot of interesting choices to consider and it is definitely not a definite win situation. Glad to finally get that to the table!

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On the Livestream (below) Michael and I checked out Batman: Everybody Lies. New to me!

If you are familiar with the Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game series of games, you will understand how the basics of this game work. It is batman so the setting is Gotham, which is awesome. I have to say I am totally into the theme and setting for this new Detective game.

No one gets to play Batman, which is sad, but I understand it. You can use batman for information, but this is my limited knowledge having only played the prologue so far. My understanding is that you will unfold more of the mechanics and interactions as you play through the 3 different cases in the box. I do know that each character has personal goals in each game to try and accomplish, so that is a big difference from the other Detective games, and why you need 2-4 players to play.

The way the game works is basically the same as the others since you are moving to a location and losing time as you go. You will eventually run out of time, so you won't see everything the scenario has to offer. You will need to answer a series of questions at the end to test how well you solved the case.

Michael and I continue to be terrible at the Detective games, including this Batman game. We honestly thought we knew what was going on in the tutorial, but we were totally wrong. We managed to score only 1/4 points simply since we ended in the yellow zone. So when we read the finale, we were like "WHAT". haha, our gut instincts are terrible I suppose. I still think it is fun to try and figure it all out. I like that they explain the whole thing clearly at the end so you can see how it all ties together.

Easily a great game for Batman fans, or Detective fans. Definitely my favorite in the series so far simply for the theme alone. I really enjoy the characters and stories. Totes fun.

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Michael and I had a new Korean word game to check out. I was thinking we wouldn't be able to play it since we don't know Korean, but there were English rules included so we could play Raon with BTS. New to me!

In the box, there are 4 games to check out and try. All of the games are very simple to learn and play. This game is really supposed to be used as a tool to help teach Korean.

The game we played was an open drafting game where we could draft a tie or a card and possibly complete a card if possible. It was a race to 4 points. The tiles are all available and will help craft the words you are trying to make.

The rules explain the breakdown of a letter or word and how you can go about using that information when creating your cards.

The game wasn't difficult, but it is clear that this game isn't meant for strategy gamers. It was all about optimization and just planning and performing the tasks. Whoever could optimize the best would win. There really wasn't a lot of gameplay with this specific game. There were other games in the box and some had random tiles, but most of the games involved some sort of drafting mechanic.

If I were trying to learn the language, I would be happy to play this game as an out-of-the-ordinary type of activity. I am glad I could check it out, but it is not a game I would be returning to.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


Microbadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blog



Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
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From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:
Space Station Phoenix!





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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Mon May 16, 2022 11:00 am
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